R. J. Palacio

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Wonder: Via: The Padawan Bites the Dust Summary & Analysis

That night, August cuts off his Padawan braid. It makes Via surprisingly angry. She remembers how proud August had been of his braid, and she's angry that he cut it off without talking to her or calling Christopher, who also grew a braid at the same time. After dinner, Mom knocks on Via's door and Via recognizes that Mom is drained. Via declines to tell her about Miranda, but asks if she'd bring in Daisy to sleep in her room. Mom agrees, but she doesn't come back. Dad does, and Via tells him that Miranda and Ella are being jerks. He teases her about reading War and Peace, even though she knows he's proud of her, and later brings Daisy in.
This passage makes it clear that the story is jumping back in time to when August cut off his braid. Meanwhile, the respective actions of Mom and Dad suggest that Dad has more emotional bandwidth to attend to his children's needs. He also seems to recognize that Via needs parenting just like August, which may explain why Via feels so betrayed by Mom in particular. Via's anger at August's decision to cut off his braid shows that Via still feels some control over August's identity. This shows that she'll have to let go of August, just as Mom and Dad will.
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